On November 18, Erickson Retirement Communities – Riderwood staff attended the Wildlife Habitat Council (WHC) Annual Symposium at the Marriott Waterfront in Baltimore, Maryland, to receive its official Corporate Lands for Learning site certificate. This certification demonstrates that the employees and residents at this Erickson Retirement Community are committed to providing exemplary site-based conservation education experiences for the community by using its habitat as a tool for teaching ecological concepts and the human role in conservation.
“Riderwood is the only retirement community in the nation certified as Wildlife Habitat and Corporate Lands for Learning Site,” said WHC President Robert Johnson at the awards presentation. “Erickson Retirement Communities should be commended for achieving this certification and take great pride in knowing that they have made important contributions to conservation education.”
According to Donna Mason, Riderwood’s Executive Director, “This valuable accreditation reflects Riderwood’s commitment to environmental stewardship and outstanding environmental education and voluntary efforts. It’s amazing to see how staff and residents work together to protect the natural resources, habitat, and native species of this region…I applaud their efforts.”
Since 2005, Riderwood has been the first retirement community in the world certified as a wildlife habitat by the WHC, and diligently works every day to save the environment. Employees, residents and local organizations work in partnership to fulfill four basic goals of a certified Wildlife Habitat Management Plan (WHMP), which include improving nesting sites and cover; improving the quantity, quality, and diversity of food sources for wildlife; removing invasive plant species; and providing environmental education year-round.
“Each year more and more of the fields and woodlands near Riderwood are turning into shopping centers, commercial buildings and homes. Our campus is providing a small, green oasis for uprooted wildlife. The Wildlife Habitat Council has offered valuable assistance in our efforts to maintain and improve the quality of our habitat. I’m just thrilled to be a part of this international effort to involve corporations in managing their lands in wildlife-friendly ways,” said Anne Blackburn, Riderwood’s Resident Chair, WHMP.
The mission of Riderwood’s CCL Program is to use the preserved woodland areas and wildlife habitat improvement projects on campus to help residents, their families, special guests and staff experience and value the natural world and assist them in being more proactive in its protection and use.
More than 2,800 of people live at Riderwood, an Erickson full-service retirement community that promotes a vibrant lifestyle. Erickson Retirement Communities is one of the leading national developers of full-service retirement communities. Headquartered near Baltimore, Maryland, Erickson has built an innovative network of 23 communities that combine a maintenance-free active lifestyle with an ever-expanding host of amenities, social activities, and wellness and medical centers, proven to improve both physical and mental health.